How to Put an SSL Certificate on a WordPress Website

The number of people visiting websites directly from social media platforms like Facebook and Google has opened the door for a brand new way of earning an income off a blog – using affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing is a type of performance marketing where you earn a commission when someone clicks a monetized link or buys a product that’s promoted on your blog. It’s a fantastic option for bloggers who want to make money from a third party site.

The best part? You don’t need a huge audience to get started. You just need to have a WordPress website (or blog) with a few pages and a few posts and you’re good to go.

Here’s how to put an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate on a WordPress website so that your site’s connections are completely encrypted whenever a client or a visitor makes a purchase on your behalf or visits your site via a social media share button or embedded link.

The Benefits of An SSL Certificate

Let’s get to the good stuff first – the benefits of having an SSL certificate!

According to Let’s Encrypt, an SSL certificate can do the following:

  • Secure all website files and communications with the help of encryption technology.
  • Reduce the risk of hacking and data breaches.
  • Provide added trust and security to your site.
  • Facilitate online transactions (e.g., online shopping, banking)
  • Protect your privacy.

All of these benefits make a compelling case for investing in an SSL certificate for your website. If you’re serious about growing your affiliate income and want to see your site flourish, you need to take the time to implement this feature.

How To Install An SSL Certificate On a WordPress Site

WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems (CMS’s) used globally, so installing an SSL certificate on a WordPress site is pretty easy. In fact, WordPress comes with a built-in option that makes it nearly effortless.

The first step is to navigate to your WordPress dashboard. From there, you’ll need to click on the link to your site’s SSL status. If you don’t have one yet, you’ll see a small message explaining that you need to set up an SSL certificate on your site.

Once you’ve confirmed that you need an SSL certificate, the next step is to navigate to your site’s general settings. Here, you’ll need to pick your site’s domain to be the one that receives the SSL certificate. When picking a domain, you want to make sure that it’s unique and has not been taken by someone else. Once you’ve entered the domain name, click on save settings.

Activate The HTTPS Strict Transport Security (HSTS) Preference

Once your sites settings are saved, you’ll be able to return to your dashboard and click on the link to activate the HTTPS preference. This is where you’ll tell WordPress:

“Hey, everyone! Thanks for using my site. To keep you protected while browsing my content, I’ve activated the HTTPS Strict Transport Security (HSTS) setting on this website. This prevents any man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks while browsing my pages, and ensures your security and privacy when visiting this site.”

You’ll see a green lock icon () in the address bar whenever an HTTPS connection is made. When a visitor sees this, they know that your site is protected and that they’re browsing data that’s been securely transmitted.

Set Up Your Affiliate Account

If you’re new to affiliate marketing, the first thing you’ll need to do is to set up an affiliate account with an appropriate affiliate marketing network (e.g., Clickbank, Amazon, etc.). Networks can be a great way to find suitable products to promote as an affiliate, and they provide you with an easy-to-use dashboard where you can manage your campaigns from.

Since you’ll need to have an account with a network in order to be able to promote their products, it’s important to choose a network that’s known for providing a great experience to its customers. You don’t want to risk your user’s experience by setting up an affiliate account with an unknown network. Once you’ve created an account with a reputable network, you can move onto the next step.

Choose A Product To Promote

After you’ve set up your affiliate account, you can choose from a wide array of products to promote. Depending on your niche, you can find some excellent products that could make excellent affiliate topics.

For example, if you’re into fitness and nutrition, you can promote protein powder, vitamin supplements, or meal delivery services (e.g., Nutrisia, My Protein, etc.).

Set Up Your PayPal Or Stripe Account

PayPal and Stripe are two of the most popular online payment systems, so it’s essential to set up an account with one of them. Once you’ve set up your account with either system, you can proceed to the next step.

Create A Unique Payment Method For Affiliates

Since you’ll be using an online payment service for your affiliate marketing campaigns, you’ll need to create a unique payment method. This is where you can choose your brand’s name as the store name, and you can add a note explaining that this is an affiliate store. Once you’ve created the payment method, you can add it to your affiliate dashboard.

Choose A Hosting Service That Supports HTTPS

Once you’ve launched your site, you’ll need to purchase hosting that supports HTTPS. Since most hosting services are very affordable, this shouldn’t be a problem. For the best user experience, you’ll want to go with a hosting service that’s been optimized for WordPress and offers a one-click install for the HTTPS protocol. If you do end up choosing a free hosting service, make sure to purchase a cheaper plan that offers the same features. In the long term, you’ll be grateful you took the time to install and use an SSL certificate.

Set Up Your Database With WordPress

Since you’ll be using WordPress as the basis of your website, setting up your database with this content management system (CMS) is a very easy process. In fact, WordPress comes with a built-in option that makes it nearly effortless to have a fully functioning database.

You’ll just need to follow the on screen instructions to have a new database set up and ready to use. Make sure to back up your database regularly in case you run into any problems. You can also choose to use a tool like Flywheel to streamline the process of manually backing up your database.

Set Up Your Email Marketing List

To be able to promote products via email marketing, you’ll need to have an email list. You can start by creating a list of all your website’s email subscribers. If you have a few hundred emails, you can start with a free mailing list provider like MailChimp.

You can then use this list to send out regular email blasts, sharing news, discounts, etc. In terms of marketing emails, you’ll want to keep them short and sweet, focusing on building trust and credibility. You can also use this opportunity to cross-promote with other channels, like social media.

Set Up Your Social Media Accounts

The final step of the process is to set up your social media accounts. This is where you can connect with your audience and promote your products. You can set up all of your social media accounts with the help of a free tool like Hootsuite.

You’ll then be able to connect with your audience via different platforms (e.g., Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) and share all of your content, whether it’s blog articles, videos, or gifs.

Choosing affiliate products to promote and learning how to effectively market them is the best way to earn a steady income from a blog. By understanding the benefits of an certificate, you’ll be able to install and use it on your WordPress site, effectively allowing you to take advantage of this burgeoning market.